What is SEO in 2023

What is SEO

Search Engine Optimization

SEO means Search Engine Optimization, which basically is the complete set of configurations done in the website that makes it searchable by Google and other search engines. SEO or “white” SEO is a practice recommended directly by search engines companies.

On the other hand, there’s Black SEO, which is an unofficial practice that most of the time the only outcome is the banning of search engines companies.

The SEO included in all of our website plans is only the “white” SEO, also some of our Artificial Intelligence products are oriented to increase the website performance in the search pages.

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SEO in 2023

Google is constantly changing the rules of the game, updating the algorithm responsible for ranking the websites. The SEO methodology used in 2022 is useless or a least partially useless in 2023.

Google tries to update the algorithm incrementally, and most of the time introduces new ways to rank the websites, encouraging web designers to create better content and engaging websites with a more friendly user experience, and by the other hand banning spam practices for example.

The use of AI content creators is today officially considered spam. However, do not be confused with using AI tools that interpret content (text or images) to improve the cataloging tasks on a website and the productivity of editing content.

ChatGPT and SEO

When ChatGPT arrived to the public domain in November 2022 it marked a before and after in the world of SEO. A lot of disruptions are still happening in SEO related fields. As we said in SEO Trends 2023 the use of AI Tools for SEO are increasing and evolving with ChatGPT as well. Check our complete section of content dedicated to AI.

 

SEO vs SEM

Some people understand SEO as only part of other factors that contributes to ranking a website in a search engine, and some others consider SEO as the global strategy to obtain the goal of ranking a website. With new Google rules and newly available software, we should re-think what SEO is and how we implement it on our websites. 

In ai4k.eu we understand SEO as the configurations done in the website and in Google tools that make a website searchable and this is included by default in all our Website Plans. Additionally, we offer Bundle SEO Theory product which is a SEO / SEM strategy to position your business keywords on the Google search engine.

Today we talk about SEM (Search Engine Marketing) as well, which is when we pay Google Ads for example to rank the website for some keywords. Or when we pay an influencer to promote our product. Furthermore, there is the link purchase, which may be considered a black SEO practice, but unfortunately is still essential to get results in a short time in search engines.

Google is trying to improve the way the search algorithm interprets what is “good content” and what is SPAM but it is not totally there yet. That means if your website checks all the Google guidelines your competence may still beat you with thousands of backlinks. In that case, the only way to position the website may be through SEM.

SEO vs SEO / SEM Strategy

A website is shown on the search engine results page (SERP) after a process that is described in our definition of Website Design.

The Google bots (or Google spiders) visit every web on the planet in what we know as Discovery. Google marks the website as a candidate for another process called Crawling. Then bots crawl the web, which means taking the needed information for cataloging that web in the index.

If the website is not configured correctly, those 2 first processes never happen.

Then there is a third process called Indexing. This is when Google inserts all the website URLs in the main catalog (Google Index). The website is in a list of 2 billion websites.

If the website is not configured correctly the next step may fail.

The fourth step happens when the search engine algorithm sorts the websites using the secret and changing formula: the Google Ranking Factors. It is secret because Google sells keywords, and no matter how many guidelines are documented by Google, the algorithm interpretation of what is “authoritativeness” for example, or any other factor, is never explained or disclosed, and that is the heart of the matter.

Google Ranking Factors in 2022 2023

Ranking a website is a complex task, remember that we are trying to beat an algorithm that is changing, sorting, and re-sorting constantly billions of websites using artificial intelligence. The 4 processes mentioned above are the compilation of what SEO experts say today and our own experience. It may be more processes between these 4 or sorted differently, however, we believe that is the simplest way to explain it to a general audience.

We also redefine or update some concepts to improve the learning of our readers and in connection with our transparency commitment. We redefined what is a website and what is SEO, attaching the purpose to the first and adapting to the new Google Ranking Factors in 2022 2023 guidelines the latter.

 

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Ranking and Conversion

We can separate 2 main process happening here: the Ranking and the Conversion. The Ranking is the set of sub process happening before the user click on the SERP link. The Conversion happens after the website is shown to the user.

Ranking subprocesses, Before Click

  1. Discovering

  2. Crawling

  3. Indexing

  4. Ranking

  5. Maintenance

Once an URL is in the index starts a consolidation process that depends on the competitor’s URL behavior.

To the four processes explained above, we added Maintenance, as we understand that every SERP position is temporary and can be beaten by SEO or SEO / SEM strategies at any time. Maintenance refers to the set of activities to keep or improve the current SERP position of the website (creating more content, for example). Remember that  Attention through Content is the main Google Search goal.

Conversion subprocesses, After Click

At this moment the web page (notice that every page of the website will rank differently) is in the SERP, on the first 5 pages, hopefully, that means it is in the list of the top 50 websites that rank for the same keyword.

The “click next” button in SERP desktop view is every 10 links, and in mobile view is every 50 links.

The scroll of 50 links and more (ads, inserts, snippets, cards and stories) is already a tiring task, so we doubt a keyword can hold beyond that 50 links mark.

As you can understand the former concept of website design (the graphic design of a page that is hosted on the web) is not in play yet. It is only after the click on the SERP link when your website “really exists”.

The following factors are happening after the click, and with that user intervention Google gathers more information to rank your website. This second Conversion Subprocess is way more dynamic than the first, and it depends how the visitor interact with the website and if that visitor creates one or more conversions.

  1. Performance

  2. Accessibility

  3. Best Practices

  4. SEO

  5. Expertise

  6. Authoritativeness

  7. Trustworthiness

That is the summary of our simple version of the Google Ranking Factors in 2022 2023, two main processes that happen between a click.

SEO and Data

Podcast from Google Search Central

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Main Goal of SEO

In the end, is all matter of interpretation, isn’t it? We strongly believe though if you define SEO in 2023 you need to update the definition according to the newest Google SEO guidelines and ChatGPT. If you talk about web design you need to talk about the purpose of that website, which we believe should be aligned with your business goals.

In brief ai4k.eu redefine SEO as all the configurations to improve the Ranking Subprocess and Website Design all the tasks oriented to boost the Conversion Subprocess.

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